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SI - Small Scale Advantages
Umeå University, Faculty of Science and Technology, Computing Science.
Umeå University, Faculty of Science and Technology, Computing Science.
2006 (English)Report (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Not being part of a larger SI-organisation has both advantages and disadvantages. In this paper we try to illustrate the advantages of doing SI small scale. In a large scale SI-organisation the supervisors are often not teachers themselves and/or not familiar with the practices of a specific course. To have teaching staff supervising a SIproject completely focused on one course is favourable in many ways. The decision to introduce SI was taken by the department of Computing Science to support the students at the introductory course in object oriented programming. This course demands a high level of abstract thinking and is very heavy on many of the new students majoring in computing science. In 2002 we started off with a general training course for eight new SI-leaders, but soon discovered that much could be gained from making the training specifically working with the course at hand.

Working with the course material in the training course makes it possible to use all ideas, experiences, and material developed during the training directly in the SI-meetings. The SI-leaders can prepare their information to the students; they can even start planning their first meeting. Another import part of the training is simulated SI-meetings. We “stage” them to illustrate different aspects of group dynamics and to control that not all problematic situations happen at one single meeting. Supervisor meetings are another important component of a SI-project. They benefit from small scale since they provide an excellent possibility for feedback and exchange of ideas if the supervisors themselves have experience in teaching the actual course. Working in small scale with one specific course also makes it possible to refine the study strategies and techniques used in the SI-meetings. The course is heavily targeted towards problem solving and this has influenced the meetings in different ways. For example it is not uncommon to let some of the students try out ideas in the computer labs and report back to the SI-group during a meeting. Results from six projects finished since 2002 will be presented and discussed. We have seen that the performance and grades are higher in the group attending SI and we are currently doing follow ups to check the retention rate.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Dept. of Computing Science, Umeå University , 2006. , 13 p.
, UMINF, 06.23
Keyword [en]
Computer Science Education
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-8394OAI: diva2:148065
Available from: 2008-01-30 Created: 2008-01-30Bibliographically approved

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Kallin Westin, LenaNordström, Marie
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